SQL Server 2008 Service Pack 2 was retired and became an “unsupported service pack” back on September 17, 2012. Despite this, I have been running into a lot of systems lately that are still running SQL Server 2008 Service Pack 2 or older lately, so I thought it made sense to follow up my previous post, Performance and Stability-Related Fixes in All SQL Server 2008 SP3 Cumulative Updates with another one listing some of the most relevant hotfixes in all eleven of the SQL Server 2008 Service Pack 2 Cumulative Updates.
Since SQL Server 2008 Service Pack 2 is retired, I think you should be on SQL Server 2008 Service Pack 3. The purpose of this list is to help convince you (and your organization) that you should keep your SQL Server 2008 up-to-date and in a supported status by highlighting some of the fixes that you are missing by staying on an older build of SQL Server 2008.
If you don’t believe in applying SQL Server Cumulative Updates, you should be aware that SQL Server 20008 SP3 RTM (Build 10.0.5500) only includes the fixes up through SQL Server 2008 SP2 CU4 (Build 10.0.4285), so you won’t have many of the fixes listed in this post.
You can always read the fix-lists for each cumulative update since SP2 RTM, available from this master CU list article from Microsoft:
Or, you can start out with this filtered list (of Engine-related fixes) that I put together:
SQL Server 2008 SP2 CU1 (10.0.4266) November 16, 2010
SQL Server 2008 SP2 CU2 (10.0.4272) January 17, 2011
SQL Server 2008 SP2 CU3 (10.0.4279) March 21, 2011
SQL Server 2008 SP2 CU4 (10.0.4285) May 16, 2011
FIX: “A severe error occurred on the current command” error message when you use the Freetexttable or the Containstable function on an indexed view in a CTE query in SQL Server 2008 or in SQL Server 2008 R2
SQL Server 2008 SP2 CU5 (10.0.4316) July 18, 2011
SQL Server 2008 SP2 CU6 (10.0.4321) September 19, 2011
SQL Server 2008 SP2 CU7 (10.0.4323) November 21, 2011
SQL Server 2008 SP2 CU8 (10.0.4326) January 16, 2012
SQL Server 2008 SP2 CU9 (10.0.4330) March 19, 2012
SQL Server 2008 SP2 CU10 (10.0.4332) May 21, 2012
SQL Server 2008 SP2 CU11 (10.0.4333) July 16, 2012
Most of those hotfixes seem pretty significant to me (and this is just the Engine-related subset that I picked since Service Pack 2 RTM). I strongly encourage you to start reading the hotfix list when new cumulative updates are released, because there is a lot of good information there that may convince you and your organization to stay more current with your SQL Server Cumulative Updates. Keep in mind that SQL Server Cumulative Updates are actually cumulative, so if you install one, you will get all of the fixes for all of the previous Cumulative Updates for the Service Pack that you are on.